Categories: Announcements :

FAQ: Google+ Local [READ THIS.]

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FAQ: Google+ Local [READ THIS.] vanessagene 5/31/12 4:34 PM
I'll be updating this FAQ as you guys raise new questions. Please check back! Or watch a video answering the top user questions on the Google and Your Business YouTube channel.

Also check out our intro post here.

1. I already have a Google+ page, and now my Place page has been upgraded to this local Google+ page. How do I bring the two together, so that I have just one page?
The short answer is, you can’t merge the two right now. But believe me, we’re working on that. So to be very clear here: We will we be combining these two pages, so that you will only have to manage one listing — basic information, social features and all — across Google. Please give us time to get there — we’ll keep you posted every step of the way. For now, keep managing your pages as is from the two separate dashboards (Google Places and Google+)
Edit: If you're ready to be on the cutting edge, you can sign up to be considered for an early upgrade. Please note that this is a test and isn't for the faint of heart! Sign up using this form.

2. What’s the difference between a Google+ page and the local Google+ page?
A Google+ page has all the social features available to Google+ users -- Hangouts, sharing to circles, video uploads, etc. A local Google+ page is just a new look to the Google Places listing, minus the social features. Those social features are coming soon, as I mention in my original post above. And as I also said, we know it's not ideal needing to manage two separate pages.

3. So will there eventually be only one page?
Yes, there will eventually only be just one page to manage, with information integrated across Google -- Search, Maps, Google+, mobile.

4. What should I as a business owner do?
You do not have to do anything — we've migrated the Google Places listing for you. Keep managing that formerly-known-as Places listing via your Places dashboard, under the same account you were using before. 

5. I've verified my Places listing already. Why doesn't the checkmark show on this new local Google+ page?
We did not port the verification checkmarks over to this new local Google+ page. Your verified status hasn't changed, though — you can still manage this listing via the Places dashboard. We're working on getting those checkmarks on there, please sit tight.

6. So should I still create a Google+ page?
You've got a few options:

1) You may create a Google+ page to try out the social features in Google+. Be sure to choose the Local category so that we can bring your multiple pages together to create one listing later on.

2) Go to this form — http://goo.gl/8apbo give us your email address, and we'll let you know when we merge your pages in to a single page — like the ones we feature on the Google and Your Business blog post (http://goo.gl/lhF6S).

3) Sit tight, and as we mentioned in the blog post, we're going to have a solution for everyone that's verified today that will make upgrading to the full local Google+ page experience seamless and easy.

7. Why am I still seeing the old Place page?
This launch was a slow roll out so we could make sure everything was running smoothly. Soon, you’ll only be seeing the new and improved local Google+ pages in our search results. Some old links to Place pages may work for a little while longer.

8. Is there multi-admin functionality yet for local Google+ pages, just like for regular Google+ pages?
Nope.

9. Has the process for verification changed at all? When I click the “Manage this page” button along the right, it kicks me to my Google Places dashboard. What’s up with that?
Well, first, did you claim and verify that listing? Then it’s working as intended, kicking you to your Places dashboard from which you can manage your business’s details. Is that your business’s listing, and you’ve not yet claimed and verified the listing? Again, it’s working as intended, kicking you to your Places dashboard, from which you can select “Add another listing” (bottom right), do the phone number lookup for your business, and claim and verify the listing. Verification works same as it always has — request the PIN, wait for the postcard or phone call.

10. Can you explain this Zagat scoring system?
Indeed I can. We have a great Help article on this very feature.

11. What happened to the Best Ever medals?
We’ve replaced the 5-star rating scale and Best Evers with the 30-point Zagat scoring system.

12. Why are my reviews out of chronological order?
Right above the first review, you’ll see a pulldown menu. The default is set to “Most helpful.” Select the pulldown and choose “Latest” to see them in chronological order.

13. What makes a review a "Most helpful" review?

When you sort the reviews by "Most helpful," this takes into consideration many aspects of each review's text and author, as well as feedback from users who vote on whether the review was helpful or not.  

14. Do my customers need a Google+ account to leave a review?
Yes. Reviewers need to be logged in to Google+ to leave a review. The review will be public and attributed to their Google+ name.

15. I manage bulk listings. What should I do?
Keep submitting your listings for verification via Google Places for business, and keep managing them via the bulk management tool found via the Google Places dashboard.

16. Do I still have access to listing analytics?
Yes. Sign in to your Places dashboard and you'll see historical metrics and activity from your Place page as well as new click and impression metrics on the local Google+ page that originated from Google.com and Google Maps. Metrics originating from within Google+ Local or from searches within Google+ Local won't be displayed in the dashboard.

17. Are Offers still U.S.-only?
Yes.

18. What about my ranking, does that change with this launch?
The Google+ Local launch was an interface and design change. But generally speaking, ranking algorithms are always changing, so listings are always moving up and down. There's nothing specific to this launch, but the ranking of a listing a year ago is likely in a different spot now, and it will likely be in a different spot next year, or even next week!

19. I have feedback to share, who can I send it to?
Please go to Google+ and click the “Home” button. At the top right, you’ll see a Gear icon. Click it and in the pulldown select Send feedback. We’re gathering it all up for the product teams.


20. I'm trying to create a listing in the Google Places dashboard, but I don't see my country in the dropdown menu. What's up? 
If you're attempting to create a new listing, and you're not seeing your country or region in the dropdown menu, it's likely that Google+ Local, formerly Google Places, is not available there. See our Help Center for a complete list of available countries. On that same article, check to see if Google Map Maker is available for your country or region (you can see where MM is available on this list too). You can use Map Maker, a tool that allows you to add and edit information on Google Maps, to add/edit your business information: Get started at: mapmaker.google.com, and visit our Help guide for how tos on adding places.

21. Will Google be redirecting old Places URLs to the new Google+ URLs?
Keep in mind that we can't guarantee that you'll see a permanent URL from Google for any given page on our site. If you're directing customers to your listing for reviews purposes, you might be better off asking them to search for the listing in any printed/permanent collateral you have. 

22. I only see 2 categories on my local Google+ page -- where are the others?
We display 2 categories at first, but if you click on them, you'll see any others that for your listing.